Cape Town - Quinton de Kock and Gihann Cloete revitalised the Titans’ CSA T20 Challenge campaign with two rapid half-centuries in Gqeberha on Wednesday.
The openers raced out of the blocks with a 106-run partnership in just 13.5 overs. Cloete struck 53 off 41 balls (6x4, 1x6), while De Kock went deeper with 72 off 61 balls (5x4, 1x6) to set up the Sky Blues’ three-run victory.
Although the Titans could not fully capitalize on this positive start with only Donavon Ferreira adding a 17-ball 27 run cameo, it was enough to see off the Rocks.
The Paarl side will rue this missed opportunity as their run chase was well set up by De Kock’s Proteas ODI opening partner Janneman Malan.
The Bolander, along with his brother Pieter, began the chase in an equally positive manner with a 67-run stand in 7.3 overs. But their departure within two runs of each other was a real setback, particularly Janneman’s loss for 45 off 31 balls.
It seemed the Rocks had lost their way completely, but South Africa u19 international Michael Copeland, who was fresh off the plane from the Caribbean, showed his immense potential.
Copeland kept his composure despite losing his more senior partners on the other end with a 33-ball 39.
GAME 1 RESULT | @Titans_Cricket WON BY 3 RUNS— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) February 9, 2022
A well-balanced performance with bat and ball sees Theunis de Bruyn's men grab victory in a thriller on Day 3🔥 #CSAT20Challenge #BePartOfIt pic.twitter.com/fBRbq5KjKb
However, when he fell along with Ferisco Adams (13 off eight balls) in the brilliant penultimate over from Junior Dala (3/36), the Rocks chances of pulling off a victory were significantly reduced.
And although they ultimately fell short by single boundary hit, the Titans were well deserved victors with their campaign now underway after an opening loss to the Warriors.
The Rocks have lost both their matches and are rooted to the bottom of the table.
Titans: 158/2 (De Kock 72, Cloete 53)
Rocks: 155/8 (J Malan 47, Copeland 39, Dala 3/36)
Titans won by 3 runs